2/8 1996


Preliminary note

The reports below document the symbolic spadecut to celebrate the construction-start of the atomic research reactor in Garching and the events and arrests following it. The imminent proceedings against the people affected by repression from police and justice will cost a lot of money. Therefore we want to ask you to support them. Donations can be transferred to the following bank-account from where they will be forwarded to those affected: Account-owner: R.Wogatzke / With: Postbank Essen, Germany / Account Number (=Kto. Nr.): 5709 91-432 / Sorting Code (=Blz.): 360 100 43 / Reference: Garching (please do not forget the reference - otherwise the money may not be forwarded correctly). All translations to English by A-Infos (D).

Official ceremony to celebrate construction-start in Garching

A-Infos (D)

On Thursday, the 1st of August, the Technical University of Munich celebrated the begin of construction-works for the atomic research reactor FRM II in Garching near Munich with a symbolic spadecut in front of 400 invited guests. The gathered politic and economic representatives welcomed the contentious project, among them representatives of the federal research ministry, the bavarian regional government and the major company Siemens. In his speech the bavarian prime minister Stoiber declared that the 720-Million Mark project would be necessary for Germany, so as not to "for ever loose connection" to "central areas of high technology". According to Stoiber the reactor will supply neutrons for fundamental scientific research, material testing and cancer therapy. He described protests against the construction as specific German animosity towards technology. He did not comment on protests from abroad.

The constructions of the reactor had mainly led to especially harsh critique from foreign countries - especially the USA- since it is to be run with HEU (Highly Enriched Uranium): Uranium which is suitable for weapons technology. This will be the first breech of a world-wide moratorium on the construction of HEU-plants in 16 years, which had been initiated by the USA to ban the dangerous substance from civilian reactors and prevent new nuclear powers from emerging. While supporters of the reactor explain the alleged necessity of using HEU by arguing that it is indispensable for certain scientific experiments, critics say this line of argumentation is untenable and point to the 50 research reactors worldwide that work with low enriched uranium. At the moment it is unclear, how the reactor, which is to start operating in 2001, is to be supplied with HEU: The US-government has imposed a delivery-halt against Germany and talks with the Russian government, which also has HEU-supplies, do not seem to be developing either. Currently negotiations with the Scottish reprocessing plant Dounreay have been picked up; if the talks are successful, highly radioactive used fuel rods would be transported to the plant for reprocessing and HEU as well as nuclear waste returned. The bavarian regional government invests an annual sum of half a million Marks into advertising the reactor to boost its acceptance among their own population.

Outside of the development area between 150 and 200 people took part in a rally against the construction of the reactor. A blockade of the access road was evicted by the police. Later some of the demonstrators walked to the hoarding from where they voiced their protest with slogans and whistling during the official speeches. A protest march to the hoarding had been prohibited by a court but not a walk along the public road which leads to the hoarding. The police later claimed that masked people amongst the demonstrators had thrown stones. These claims where denied by witnesses. After the event six demonstrators where arrested and others threatened with arrests by the police. Witnesses reported that uniformed police and police in plain clothes acted with extreme violence during these arrests and speculated that this was due to the press being absent. Most press organs later emphasized the non-violent police behavior during the main event and made no mention of the arrests. Those arrested were brought to the police records department and temporarily kept under arrest while their registered addresses were searched on grounds of "looming danger", which enables police to do house searches without a court order. The arrested demonstrators were accused of "violations of the assembly-laws", in one case also of "breach of peace".

Donations to the following account will be forwarded to those affected to cover the costs for the juridical proceedings: R.Wogatzke / With: Postbank Essen, Germany / Account Number (=Kto. Nr.): 5709 91-432 / Sorting Code (=Blz.): 360 100 43 / Reference: Garching (please do not forget the reference - otherwise the money may not be forwarded correctly)

Arrests in Garching

The following two reports were written by an anarchist comrade and distributed on the Internet.

Notes on the text: The FAU (Freie ArbeiterInnen Union = Free Workers Union) is an anarcho-syndicalist union in Germany. The "Debatte" (=Debate) is the internal circular of the FAU. The Rote Hilfe (=Red Help) is a leftist prisoner-support organizations. The ABC (Anarchist Black Cross) is an international anarchist prisoner-support and anti-repression network. The German ABC section dissolved at the beginning of the year so that it can no longer become active in this case. (A-Infos (D))

Dear comrades,

following is a short report on the arrests during the anti-nuclear rally on the 1st of August in Munich-Garching. All in all 6 comrades were arrested by the pigs, amongst them E. from the FAU Regensburg. The arrests were carried out in a massive and brutal police action, for example E. was hit on the head several times by a cop in plain clothes. All those arrested were registered by the police records department. At the same time their registered addresses were searched by the police with the meaningless reason of "looming danger". The arrested people were brought to the infamous Munich Ettstrasse, where E. was denied a call to his lawyer. (For not signing some paper.) They are now all being accused of "violation of the assembly laws", E. also of "breach of peace" for allegedly carrying paint bombs with him. During the demonstration against Stoiber and Co the Cops were relatively cautious, probably because of media presence. For example they did not carry any battle dress. However, it is probable that members of the thug-troop USK took part in the attacks in "normal" pig-uniforms. THE IMMINENT PROCEEDINGS WILL COST A LOT OF MONEY! WE THEREFORE CALL YOU TO COLLECT MONEY FOR THE PROCEEDINGS IN YOUR LOCAL GROUPS.

After yesterdays house searchings another one in E.'s second place of residence became known today. The pigs (4 in uniforms and 2 in plain clothes) evidently had a court order contrary to yesterdays searchings. Among the confiscated objects were several issues of the "Debatte", other FAU-Material, and Addressbook and various magazines. A record of confiscated objects was not handed out !!

At the moment the affected people are debating about further steps. (Lawyers, Rote Hilfe {sadly no ABC}) We will keep you informed. An account for donations will be made.

Witnesses about arrests in Garching

This Text was compiled by the magazine Anti Atom Aktuell - Redaktion Sued (S.Passlack@link-m.zer). (A-Infos (D))

Press-information from 08.02.96

Eye-Witness reports on counter-event

_"1. Spadecut for FRM II" on 1st August 1996_

_*Brutal police-action by plain-clothed-police*_

To enable neutral coverage, eye-witnesses reports from anti-nuclear activists taking part in the event but not involved in the police actions in any way and only look on, follow. The witnesses are personally known to the editors and also known to be reliable. There are also other eye-witness accounts that confirm their report. See also the press release from the 8.1.96 by the "Association against the nuclear reactor Garching" (Buendnis gegen Atomreaktor Garching). Printage of quotes that do not distort the meaning is free.

Berthold Denk (*, 24, dentistry-student):

"The civic action group Garching and the SMV-Association Munich invited to a counter event during the symbolic first spadecut for the construction of the FRM II, after the protest-march was prohibited. Many opponents were already enthusiastically swaying cardboard signs and filling balloons with air at the entrance of the research area at 10 o'clock. Sadly, the counter-event was quite a bit away from the area of the official celebration, there was no ear- or eye-contact. A good connection between the festivities and the counter-rally then was arrival of the invited guests in their luxury cars - past the event of the civic action group. (..., see below)"

Annette Rechenbach (*, 18 years, high school student):

"While the civic action group performed the cabaret 'Sender freies Garching' (=station free Garching), the first visitors of the official event came to the construction area in their black S-class-cars. They were loudly booed at by the demonstrators and also hindered to drive on. This was solely done by passively standing in the way. The police, that could not accept this, took action against the youths with provocative force. Those were pushed from the road and some grabbed by the head whereby small children in the back rows where also endangered. Angry about these actions some demonstrators also kicked at the passing cars with their feet without causing any damage. The violent police rioting only stopped when some adults joined the youths and the press moved their cameras on the happenings. When all guests had driven in, about half of the demonstrators went to the hoarding which they could not prevented from because it was a public road and the judge in the court decision had recommended to 'take a walk' to the hoarding because a demonstration had been prohibited. At the barbed wire they showed their protest to the speeches of our cultural minister Zehetmair and the bavarian prime minister Stoiber inside the fenced in area by booing and shouting slogans. There were several policemen in plain clothes and also people from the Verfassungsschutz (= intelligence service) present, that made photos and films. There were no clashes and I did not see any masked people throwing stones like the police claimed later. Amongst the demonstrators were also members of the civic action group and oppositional politicians from the state parliament.

With the end of Mr. Stoibers speech the assembly dissolved and the demonstrators went back to the bus-station unitedly. While the rest was waiting for a bus, police surprisingly attacked several youth that were leaning against a parked car without any reason. Amongst others a friend of mine whom I know can not be violent was violently attacked. Two youth were arrested and lead off with their hands on their backs. When a bus came and a large part of the youth wanted to enter it, another arrest was made. Two youth were grabbed and thrown to the floor by three policemen. Three policemen forced their knees into their backs until they no longer dared to move. From what I can say there were only violent actions on the police-side. The arrests could have been made peacefully and whether they were justified will be clarified when the accusation of damaging the car is not confirmed, which I think is what will probably happen. I think the aim here is to intimidate demonstrators, factually restrict the right of democratic protest, because the protest is unpleasant. Why didn't the arrests take place red-handedly, during the alleged damaging of the cars? Because the press would have been there and watched the police action, when the demonstrators returned they were no longer there to film how youths were hit and injured. This is an attempt to nip peaceful protest in the bud."

Berthold Denk (*, 24, dentistry-student):

"(..., see above) Probably because of the large media interest the police truncheons were not yet used at this point. While the civic action group continued its rally, about 100 demonstrators went to the festival area while the police did not interfere. Only cut off by the hoarding and 20 meters away from the ceremony, the celebration-speeches were then be disturbed for two hours by a massive concert of signal whistles and slogans. Already then a couple of plain-clothed policemen were noticed around the opponents, while films were mostly made from a distance. After the official part of the ceremony ended with the first spadecut, the participants of the demonstration unitedly went in the direction of the bus-station. Suddenly the place was full of plain-clothed police, some of them among us. After that, most people walked in blocks with banners at the side. When the group dissolved a bit at the bus-station, some attack groups of plain-clothed and uniformed police began arresting some people. Probably because there was no camera present, they acted very brutally. Anti-nuclear activist were strangled, hit and kicked. People already lying on the ground were still kicked. Hits to the head and with the elbow against the breast were usual. After that the 50 youth fled in to the bus. Many youth did not have much experience with demonstrations yet and they were surprised when several police vans at the terminus threatened with the forced eviction of the bus and mass-arrests. After leaving the bus one woman was picked out, later police admitted having mistaken her. Uniformed thugs again acted very brutally during her arrest, threw several opponents into a bush and also hit them with the short end of the truncheons. Only when we reached the train did we feel safe from further infringements. As in the Tschernobyl-Demonstration in April it is becoming more and more difficult to leave a Demonstration in Munich. As soon as no more camera-teams and the like are present more and more people are picked out even if the other participants act solidaricly and the plain-clothed but also the uniformed policemen use unbelievable force in doing so."

* the witnesses are know to the editors, First- and Surnames have been changed.

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